Since sharing a bit about my interest in pencils last week I got a lot of requests for recommendations. I can't tell you what pencils you will like, but I can share some of my current favorites. I tend to like the darker leads, some of which are a bit softer.
Palomino Blackwing Pearl
This is a fantastic pencil with a great history that writes dark and retains the point fairly well. It has a great eraser that removes the lead you want without smudging. These are "spendy" averaging over $2 each. It's big brother, the 602, can write a bit darker, but I actually use the Pearls more often as they tend to smudge a bit less. Get the Blackwing Pearl here.
Tombow Mono 3B
A Japanese made dark, smooth writing pencil with a shaped head (no eraser) and a glossy black finish on the shaft. This too is a pit pricey. Best deal I have found on these is on Amazon.
Nataraj 621 Bold Pencil
This is an affordable pencil from India that writes dark. I just tried these recently and will be getting more. Amazon has them too.
General Pencil Company Cedar Pointe 2HB
This is a great writing pencil, made in the USA, and I use it a lot. It holds the point well and writes beautifully. It has an unfinished cedar shaft with a black ferrrule and eraser. Just smelling this thing makes your day better. You can get them here.
Musgrave Test Scoring 100 Pencil
The links I've provided take you to Amazon. Clicking through my Amazon links gives me a little kickback to support my pencil and book habits. But if you want to order from my favorite pencil shop, check out cwpencils.com. You won't be disappointed. When their packages arrive it's like opening a Christmas present. I'll share more about them soon.